TDP misused official machinery to win bypoll: YSR Congress chief

South India

HYDERABAD : YSR Congress Party President Y.S. Jagan Mohan Reddy on Monday accused the ruling TDP of "misusing official machinery", spending around Rs 200 crore and threatening voters to win Nandyal assembly seat by-election in Andhra Pradesh. "As per conservative estimate, the Telugu Desam Party (TDP) spent around Rs 200 crore in this by-poll," the Leader of Opposition in Andhra Pradesh assembly said.

He said while he accepted the people's verdict, it was a mistake on part of Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu to claim victory.

He thanked voters for extending support to YSR Congress despite what he said were threats and coercion from the ruling party.

TDP won the Nandyal by-election by over 27,000 votes.

"The blatant misuse of official machinery, scaring away of voters with threats about withdrawal of pensions and other sops and misuse of police for political gains, besides rampant distribution of cash, led to their victory," the YSR Congress leader said.

"The setback is temporary and we will bounce back resolutely," Jagan added.

The YSR Congress chief said it could be a referendum only if bypolls were held to all 20 constituencies where YSR Congress MLAs defected to the TDP.

"Since it was a solitary bypoll, the state focused with great concentration, but one can call it a referendum only if bypolls are held in all 20 seats and see if the government can focus on all these seats in equal measure," he said.

"... it is not prudent for Chandrababu Naidu to describe it as a victory as ethics, morals, and values were thrown to the wind and there was no level playing field," he added.

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